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Tests... Do We Need Them?
Alexandra, Age 12, Easton, CT

Teachers say that tests help us. But do they really? When we get bad grades we look down on ourselves. When we get good grades we feel good about ourselves, we feel like we are at the top of the world. But again, tests… do we really need them?

Getting bad grades lowers your self-esteem. Most people agree, like Mona Ighnai. She has said that “Whenever we get bad grades like D's and F's we feel like we are a failure and we can't do anything right. Our self-esteem goes away and we feel like we are dumb. This type of behavior leads to getting more bad grades. It makes us feel like we are very dumb and we can never get into a good college and never get a good job like being a doctor. When we get a bad grade we don't usually think that this was only one test and I can do better on the next, we only fill our heads with negative thoughts that lead to getting more bad grades on upcoming tests which leads to lower self-esteem.”

When you first glance at that dreaded paper and you see that you got a 69%. That makes you feel pretty bad. The first thing you think is it’s a “D+” it isn’t so bad, and I studied so I have an excuse. But then you look again, you see the grade the second thing you think do I have to get this signed. If I do what we my parents say. Then you start imagining crazy things and you freak yourself out. It all ends up to lowering self-esteem.

On the other hand, getting good grades makes you feel like you’re on the top of the world. It makes you feel all happy. We’ve all been students so when we get that “A+” paper we feel awesome. And again Mona Ighnai agrees with me. She said “Whenever we got good grades like A's and B's we felt really good about ourselves. We would get positive thoughts that we could do anything. We feel this way because we have gotten brainwashed that smart people get A's and dumb people get D's and F's so its wonderful to be getting good grades but when you a get a bad grade all of a sudden your confidence disappear.” This is the reason why people obsess over getting good grades.

Tests do we need them? All teachers say we do, but when we ask why they always say because they are a good review. But Peter Sacks, author of Standardized Minds says that “When test scores become the sole measure of school quality and individual achievement that transforms the very essence of what it means to be an educated person in our society. Public education should be about creating opportunities for all students to achieve and participate in a democratic society.” Our school is said to be the best academic school in the county due to our high tests scores. But it could be twelve smart kids being used by less smart kids. Or we are all really smart. But either way were not tested on our creativity. The state doesn’t know how some people are talented it band or chorus. Or maybe even art, its all about the tests.

In conclusion, I have calculated that we spend at least an hour on an average test, and take about 50 test/quizzes each school year so that is 50 hour of doing tests. So I feel we do not need tests. They lower and higher self-esteem. And we don’t really need the rates of who’s the best school. Although, it does feel nice to be the best school.

 
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